Monday, 21 November 2011

Advent waiting

Advent. In the church year ... a season of waiting ... a pregnant pause, as we prepare to celebrate a birth. In reality, for many, a season of stress. For others, a time of heightened grieving ... a season when we become aware again of our losses ... and try to somehow hold them within the mystery of Love Incarnate.

I find myself in that 'waiting space' this Advent. Following a very busy couple of months and a very powerful retreat at Green Pastures, my own health has taken a downturn and I have had to step back for a while in order to rest, recover and rebuild. This is teaching me much about the need for balance in my life, and I sense that something indefinable will be birthed through this time. So 'Advent waiting' is a reality for me this year. I am 'chilling out with God' as I gently rebuild my health. Please pray for me.

It was a huge privilege to facilitate a very moving 'Touching the Cloak' retreat in October, and a great joy subsequently to receive news of significant healings that grew out of that time. I am always thrilled and deeply humbled when healings happen. Give thanks for Christ the healer.

Unfortunately I have had to withdraw from leading the Advent retreat at Glenfall House, but the event will go ahead and be led by someone else. Please pray for the retreat leader as they step into my shoes at short notice.

Thank you for your continuing prayer support. May the Lord bless you as we journey through Advent towards the celebration of the Saviour's birth.

I send you all my love.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Autumn News

Autumn finds me in a busy season of ministry, but a week of silence at a Franciscan hermitage has been a good preparation.

Your prayers would be hugely appreciated.

My diary for the coming six weeks includes, two Quiet Days, a 4-day retreat at Green Pastures, a healing training course, a presentation, a short time at Rydal Hall and a week of conversations around the healing ministry; along with on-going reflections on a proposal for my own church.

Taking into account the preparation and recovery time needed for these events, this doesn't leave much time for rest and renewal.

Do please pray for me!

Please pray for stamina, inspiration & balance over the next 6 weeks; and for the Holy Spirit's empowering. You can see my diary by scrolling down on the right if you wish to pray more specifically.

It was a joy yesterday to lead a Quiet Day for Caverswall parish, on the theme, "Abide in Me". A very receptive group of people had some powerful Godly encounters as they 'abided' in Him.

Give thanks and pray for continued blessings for the Caverswall folks.

I am increasingly aware that the Lord calls me to a contemplative lifestyle and a ministry with a focus on healing. I'm still in the process of discerning exactly where I should put my energies next year, but the picture is becoming clearer. Again, please do keep praying.

Finances continue to be very tight, as they are for many people at this time. Please give thanks for those who lovingly support me in this way and pray that the Lord will continue to have His hand on the finances needed to underpin my ministry.

A few other snippets of news:

To my great excitement, the new Whispers of Love e-book is starting to sell ... I now have an electronic readership!

An update on my grandson, Jack - his course of treatment has now been completed and a recent scan revealed no sign of the cancer. As a family, we give huge thanks to all who have contributed to his healing through their care, skills and prayers.

On a personal level, there is now less of me! I am now just 2lbs short of attaining my target of losing 3 stone by October 1st. Thank you to all who have helped to raise funds for Birmingham Children's Hospital through sponsoring me and encouraging me (and hiding the chocolate cakes!).

May the Lord bless you all, through this autumnal season of mists and mellow fruitfulness. Thank you for your ongoing friendship and prayer support.


Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Reflection Time

For those who are fans of electronic media, I'm pleased to report that the new 'Whispers of Love' is now available as an e-book, and can be purchased here. [You can also download a free sample from the book.] Personally, I prefer a nice paperback that can be thumbed through in the bath, but us starving authors have to keep up with the times ...

As the summer begins to open up, there is at last some space in my busy schedule to relax and reflect. I have just enjoyed a hugely refreshing break in beautiful Northumberland.

I am aware of being at a crossroads in my ministry (something I have written of before), and of needing to take time to reflect upon and discern where the Lord calls me to focus my energies in 2012. Yes, I really am thinking that far ahead ... . Two recent events, each with a healing focus, have reaped huge blessings, but have also opened up questions and possibilities for the future direction of my work.

Quite simply, I can't do everything that I'm invited to do, or all the things that might be possible. So, over the summer, I shall be prayerfully considering where my focus should be.

Please give thanks for recent healings facilitated ... the Lord's grace is amazing.

And please pray for me as I embark upon conversations and reflections. I'll keep you posted ...

For all that has been, thanks.
For all that will be, yes.

Dag Hammarskjold

I pray you will all be able to take time yourselves to relax and enjoy the all-too-short summer.

Thank you for your continuing interest and support.


Monday, 20 June 2011

Touching the Cloak

It has been the most enormous privilege to spend the last week working with the Order of Jacob's Well, speaking and leading meditations at their annual conference. The Spirit moved in power and many people experienced significant healings, both during led meditations and in individual ministry times. We did indeed 'Touch the Cloak'. Give thanks for healings experienced.

It was a refreshing reminder of the power of the Holy Spirit and the healing available today, made possible through the death of Christ on the cross. I look forward to hearing how this continues to work itself out through the lives and ministries of those at the conference.

The week really deepened my heart for the healing ministry and has opened up several thoughts and conversations about possibilities for developing my work. I am aware of needing now to spend time in stillness and discernment, in order to know the way forward.

First, though, I will be leading a retreat at Llangasty in a couple of weeks time.

I would very much value your continued prayers.

Thank you.


The new edition of 'Whispers of Love' is now available on Amazon, as well as directly from myself.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Exciting Times

Exciting things are evolving in my ministry! I am pleased to announce that Whispers of Love has just been relaunched with a lovely new cover, courtesy of my good friend Audri Coleman who did a fantastic job on the cover design. I had to put some financial outlay into this, so please pray that it continues to sell well. The book can still be bought from myself and will also soon be available from Amazon in both paperback and e-book formats. And I have recently completed a small commission for Magnet magazine.

A fantastic opportunity has also recently opened up to work with a hugely anointed Christian artist. We hope to produce a book together, using my words and her artwork, and I am thrilled at the possibilities this presents. Because of other committments in the diary, we will probably continue our conversations about this later in the year. Please pray for success and blessing in this collaboration.

On the retreats front, I recently spent a weekend working with the parishes of St Peters & St Margarets in Rochester, for whom I facilitated a Quiet Day on the theme of He Chose The Nails. I also contributed to their Sunday services with a sermon and a healing meditation. After a break last year, it was good to be back in harness with this type of ministry.

I now turn my attention to preparing for my involvement in the annual conference of the Order of Jacobs Well and a retreat; both at Llangasty retreat house and both on the theme of healing. Please pray for spirit-filled preparation for these two events.

Finally, two notes on a personal level:

1) Thank you to those of you who have been praying for Jack, my grandson. At 5 months old, he has just had to have a second major operation to remove a tumour from his spine, after it re-grew, and he requires chemotherapy, which will start soon. Please continue to pray for Jack's healing.

2) Inspired by Jack's struggles, I resolved to improve my own health, and at the same time to raise funds for Birmingham Children's Hospital, who have been amazing in their care for Jack and his parents. If you feel able to sponsor me you can read all about it here.

Since the start of the year I have worked hard at establishing new daily rhythms of which fitness has been part, as has regular contemplative reflection. Please pray that I will be able to sustain these rhythms over the long haul.

The last few months have been busy and challenging times. I have appreciated your prayer support ... do please keep it coming.

Thank you.


Tuesday, 25 January 2011

A Personal Note

There's never room for complacency in the Christian walk, is there? The Lord is taking me well outside my comfort zone with some of the things I have been invited to do recently! A busy and challenging diary now lies ahead of me and I shall require high levels of spiritual, mental and physical fitness to accomplish it all.

So I would value your prayers ...

On a personal note, I'm working hard at growing into significant lifestyle changes. This is a process I started 12 months ago but which I now desire to step up a gear.

These changes involve two major life areas - (1) sustaining a daily rhythm of contemplative silence and reflection, and (2) pro-actively working to improve my physical health through breathing exercises, improved diet, a higher level of physical exercise and a better 'life-balance'.

All this is hard work and requires considerable discipline, especially if I am to continue to write and lead retreats throughout this process. Please pray that I will have that discipline.

Because a strong support network is very helpful when trying to make big changes, I plan to make my fitness programme very visible by doing a sponsored event, from which I shall donate the proceeds to Birmingham Children's Hospital, who gave such amazing care to my grandson recently. I'll send out an email about this shortly.

So, please pray for me - that I might develop a more disciplined lifestyle and be successful in incorporating these changes, in order, ultimately, to be better equipped for ministry.

Thank you to you all.

Two small footnotes -

1) my grandson Jack has made an excellent recovery - thank you to all who have been praying for him

2) my bookings diary for this year is now closed


Saturday, 15 January 2011

Turning to Face the New Year

A new year begins ... Somehow the start of a new year is always a psychological turning point, isn't it; a time of hope and resolutions and new beginnings. And so it is for me this year. As my sabbatical time draws to a close, I look forward to returning to the world of retreat leading with new vigour and fresh perspectives.

It's been a great privilege to take time to rest and renew and to prayerfully explore new dimensions of faith and new directions of calling. I have learnt so much, and the year has changed me. Trying to sum it up simply is far from easy, but at its heart it was a year about healing ... learning about it, receiving it, discovering deeper truths, feeling even more deeply called to facilitate it. The Lord has deepened my heart to help those whom I meet find healing (in its widest sense). My time apart has also reinforced how important a simple, contemplative lifestyle is to all that I am and do.

So this year I hope to weave aspects of healing into all my retreats and speaking engagements, and, God willing, to complete the books that I began working on in New Zealand. I have accepted an invitation to be the lead speaker at the annual conference of the Order of Jacob's Well, an inter-denominational healing order.

I resume retreat leading in March with a Lent retreat at Ivy House. Before then I have much preparatory work to do for the year that lies ahead. Please pray for me - for creativity and insights - as I do these preparations.

I continue to be in negotiations about publishing two new books but the wheels of publishing houses grind very slowly. Please pray for a good outcome to these publishing talks. Whispers of Love continues to just sell and sell and I shall be re-printing this shortly. I have a wealth of ideas in my head for developing new resources (projects that inspire and excite me) but I need real discernment in deciding which to follow through and which to put on hold until later. Please pray that I will have good discernment. For now, requests to lead retreats and quiet days are pouring in thick and fast, so I’ll be doing my best to honour a good number of those. It’s always a challenge though to preserve sufficient personal space to grow my relationship with God and feed all that I offer.

Financially, things are hard for me at present, as they are for so many of us. I continue to trust that the Lord will provide all that is needed to enable this ministry. Several supporters have recently had to withdraw their help, which I fully understand. Please give thanks for those who have supported me thus far and pray that others who are able will step forward.

As I step into the challenges that lie ahead, please pray for me, as I will for you.

May 2011 hold many blessings and Godly surprises for us all.